The Grand Palais des Champs-Élysées is a massive exhibition hall located in the center of Paris, within the 8th arrondissement. It’s a popular venue for dozens of exclusive events throughout the year.

Grand Palais History

Construction for the monumental structure began in 1897 in preparation for the Universal Exposition of 1900. For the event, the Grand Palais welcomed over 50 million visitors over 7 months who came to discover and celebrate major inventions of the time – from a Ferris wheel to a diesel engine to an escalator and more.

Entrance Grand Palais, Paris

The Grand Palais is a prime example of Beaux-Arts architecture, popular at the turn of the century. Ornate decorations have been carved into the exterior stone façades. Its roof is made almost entirely of glass panels, gently shaped into domes.

The interior staircase exhibits Art Nouveau style architecture, which was influenced by natural forms such as curving flower vines.

Grand Palais, Paris

What It’s Used for Today

Today, the Grand Palais in Paris is used for a variety of purposes. The Grand Palais hosts numerous major art exhibitions and events throughout the year showcasing art, culture, and design from France and around the world.

The spacious interior of the Grand Palais allows it to accommodate large trade shows, conventions, and corporate events. Major fashion shows like the Chanel Runway Show are also held there during Paris Fashion Week.

The Grand Palais des Champs-Élysées theater inside the Palais complex is used for concerts, dance performances, and other arts events.

The main hall of the Grand Palais can be transformed into a sports arena used for events like martial arts competitions or the World Fencing Competition.

So while it was originally built for the 1900 Paris Universal Exhibition, today the Grand Palais remains an active and versatile venue hosting cultural, corporate, sporting, and dining events throughout the year. It continues to be an iconic Parisian landmark.

I have visited the Grand Palais a few times over the years, mainly for art fairs like FIAC and Paris Photo, and I’m always impressed by its grandeur.

Art Nouveau Staircase Balcony in Grand Palais, Paris
Exhibition at the Grand Palais, Paris
Crystal Chandelier at the Grand Palais, Paris
Art Fair at the Grand Palais, Paris
Art Nouveau Balcony at the Grand Palais, Paris
Grand Palais Glass Ceiling, Paris

Grand Palais
3 Avenue du Général Eisenhower
75008 Paris, France

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